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1940 Bantam Pilot Using the term that has become generic in the English language, this is the undisputed first "jeep." Built by the American Bantam Car Company of Butler, Pennsylvania, it was delivered to Camp Holabird, Maryland, on September 23, 1940.
Perhaps Ford wanted this vehicle as a fall-back if the Army rejected its new design.Legend has it that the unusable body sections were buried along with a pile of scrap on the Bantam grounds. BY4112 4 cyl 112cid 45bhp @ 3,500 rpm Torque 86 lbs-ft @ 1800 rpm Transmission 3 speed synchromesh Warner Gear T84 Transfer case Spicer Dana 18 two speed Gear Shift Floor mounted Axles Spicer Dana 4.88:1 23-2 rear, Dana 25 front Wheelbase 80 inches Weight 1,840 lbs, 1940 Bantam BRC 60 The Bantam BRC-60 (or Mark II) was the first revision of the Bantam pilot model.These hand-built models were part of the first 1/4-ton contract for 70 vehicles (1 pilot model 69 additional after acceptance of the pilot model, to be distributed as follows: 40 for the Infantry, 20 for the Cavalry and 10 for the Field Artillery.). Army Transportation Museum at Fort Eustis, Virginia Specifications: Engine Continental Motor Co.At least 100 BRC-40's have survived the years, making them the second most common of the pre-production 1/4-tons. BY4112 4 cal 112cid 45bhp @ 3,500 rpm Torque 83 pound-feet Transmission 3 speed synchromesh Warner Gear T84 Transfer case Spicer Dana 18 two speed Gear Shift Floor mounted Axles Spicer Dana 4.88:1 23-2 rear, Dana 25 front Wheelbase 79 inches Weight 2,0 Willys MB and Ford GPW By July 1941, the War Department desired to standardize and decided to select a single manufacturer to supply them with the next order for another 16,000 vehicles.Willys won the contract mostly due to its more powerful engine (the "Go Devil") which soldiers raved about, and its lower cost and silhouette.
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If Bantam Number One marked the beginning of the Jeep era, the Quad marked the beginning of Willys' dominance of the series.